Lying in the Sun

Pistorius SA Tiny Tears?

Pistorius a SA Tiny Tears?

The Court proceedings once again adjourned this morning as Pistorius turns on the tears.

Jeremy Thomson Sky News speaks to SA Legal Expert Llewelyn Curlewis during interval.   He ask Curlewis to explain the details of pre-mediation.


From the outset it is clear that Gerrie Nel is going for the jugular I mean afterall what we have here, in order to secure a conviction on the main count he will have to prove that there is no credibility whatsoever in the version of Oscar Pistorius because only then can he argue that the Court should totally reject his version and rely on the State’s alternative version as the correct one. That’s the only way he will be able to prove beyond reasonable doubt intention on the side of Oscar Pistorius, but correctly pointed out by yourself slowly but surely over the last couple of days, and also today he is actually picking holes in the evidence of Oscar Pistorius going into small detail, minute detail one by one trying to break off the credibility of Oscar Pistorius.


A lot of our viewers are a little unsure about what pre meditated means..?


Maybe we should go a step back first.

Pre meditation perse is something that is more or less exclusively reserved for two aspects during a criminal trial in OUR country, not in comparison to, for example the Americas and so on.

We look at pre-meditation for purpose of bail applications that’s why it was so important in January when we had to look at the bail application whether pre meditation is involved or not because that will put a specific 'count' like murder into a specific Schedule in terms of our Criminal Procedure Act and requires a certain onus of proof on the State.  Or, on the Defence, depending on what Schedule is applicable.

Then, only when we get to the sentencing phase, in other words, after conviction, will we once again have to look at whether pre-mediation is at stake here or not.  Because if so, if that is the conclusion reached by the Judge then there is a prescribed minimum sentence that automatically comes into play, unless the Defence can prove that there are compelling circumstances to deviate from imposing the minimum sentence of life imprisonment which would otherwise not necessarily come into play.

So, at this stage the Court is not concerned about pre-mediation or not, although obviously evidence must be readily available to be considered for purposes of sentencing ultimately.


So this is all about intent…?


That is the only question at stake here, also the alternative form of guilt as well, negligence in one form or another, obviously.  The one subject test the one objective test.

14th April 2014

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